Voi partners with Drover AI to tackle pavement riding with computer vision and fix parking across Europe

Apr 27, 2022

Voi is the first micromobility operator to deploy computer vision on its e-scooters in partnership with Drover AI and its groundbreaking AI product PathPilot in Oslo.

Voi has consistently been a pioneer when it comes to utilising new technologies within the industry, be it geofencing accuracy or enhanced safety features, and is once again leading the way when it comes to tackling pavement riding and parking.

Fredrik Hjelm, co-founder and CEO of Voi Technology said: “Voi’s vision for 2030 is for micromobility to become a staple of urban living across the globe. But we know that vision can only become a reality if the micromobility industry prioritises the safety of users, pedestrians and other road users equally. That’s why we’re working with Drover to tackle the issue of pavement riding once and for all. By incorporating AI into our micromobility offering we believe we can nudge riders towards better parking and riding practices.”

Voi was the first company to trial the use of computer vision on e-scooters last year in Northampton. Today’s full-scale launch will see hundreds of Voi vehicles fitted with Drover’s PathPilot AI technology in the Norwegian capital.

The technology can automatically slow the speed of the vehicle when it enters forbidden rider zones, such as pavements.

Widely considered the market leader in micromobility-focused computer vision software, Drover AI’s technology uses machine learning and computer vision to accurately and reliably identify whether the e-scooter is on the pavement, road or cycle lane, to help prevent pavement riding.

Highly adaptable and scalable to improve operations

PathPilot will supercharge Voi’s geo-fencing capabilities in the city producing exceptionally precise results at a level that existing GPS-based solutions simply cannot offer, particularly in a dense built-up environment like Oslo where it matters most. The technology, similar to the sensors used in autonomous vehicles, can also be linked directly to a scooter’s motor to automatically slow the speed of the vehicle when it enters forbidden rider zones, such as pavements. As well, PathPilot has the capability to train its parking algorithm to spot if a scooter is parked correctly. Using the camera as a sensor, the technology can help Voi and Oslo City Council govern and control how and where scooters are parked.

Alex Nesic, co-founder and Chief Business Officer at Drover AI said: “We’re delighted to be working with Voi on the first full-scale deployment of computer vision technology in Europe. It’s clear that micromobility has a key role to play in a sustainable future for urban transport and we know AI can help solve some of the industry’s toughest problems. We look forward to seeing what today’s news in Oslo will mean for the future of micromobility.”

Through a successful rollout in the US, Drover AI has proven that, out of the box, PathPilot is highly adaptable and easily scaled to new environments without the need for excessive training or expensive labour-intensive pre-mapping. Additionally, the fully European health and safety approved product does not require availability of any GPS data to function, allowing for unparalleled location awareness and crucially the ability to take corresponding actions.

Improving scooter safety and compliance in Oslo

Demand for shared micromobility is sky high in Oslo, with 70% of the city’s population downloading Voi’s app during Summer 2021. Most Oslo riders experience a safe, comfortable and efficient ride, but Voi is committed to using innovation to ensure that every e-scooter ride in the city is a safe one.

By collaborating with Drover, Voi will be able to build a record of where and how the scooters are being ridden in Oslo, helping to inform algorithms that can prevent pavement riding and enable better scooter parking. PathPilot will also automatically deliver actionable insights on fleet use and rider behaviours which Voi can then share with Oslo City Council to help improve the service. This could see the location of e-scooters optimised to minimise the risk of pavement riding while PathPilot can also recognise fallen scooters and flag them for corrective action.

By working in partnership with local councils and innovative companies like Drover, Voi is empowering people to leave their cars behind and move around their city in a safer, more sustainable way.

The V5 voiage of discovery

News of the new partnership comes following the recent launch of the Voiager 5, Voi’s safest and most durable scooter yet. Following the rapid rollout of the Voiager 4, Voi has built upon the design achievements of last year’s model and made them even more sustainable for the V5. Among the new additions to improve the V5’s safety and useability, is a new dashboard design, an integrated phone holder and a more ergonomic handlebar design aimed at those with smaller hands.

Deep analysis of repair cycles and quality assurance checks informed the improved design, so that the new V5 sets an industry benchmark for durability. With components that are easier to repair and reuse, the V5 also has double the proportion of recycled materials compared to previous models, underlining Voi’s commitment to sustainability.

Europe’s leading micromobility operator will be deploying computer vision on its e-scooters in more cities throughout the year.

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